Learning Contract Update

I will admit up front that I am procrastinating.  I *should* be doing some bibliography work for my media literacy research project.  Instead, I am doing everything else–watching Triumph of the Will, canceling my cell phone, doing laundry.  It is amazing how much I get done when I am procrastinating!  Is there some adult learning principle at work here?  What we learn we were are supposed to be learning something else?

Anyway, as part of that procrastination, I thought I would doing a learning contract update.  I have taken the first steps towards learning Final Cut Pro.  I am pretty happy with my first movie and got lots of positive feedback from the class.  This weekend, I want to dig into some of the Lewis and Clark footage I’ve got.  I’m considering doing something that combines footage from our trip with excerpts from my journal and the L&C journals.  Contrast their journey with ours.  First, though, I need to get a look at what’s there.  It’s been seven or eight years since we took the trip.  I reviewed some of the footage this summer, but need to go back through it with a “cinematographer’s” eye.


Meanwhile, at a classmates’ suggestion, I am venturing outside my comfort zone and videotaping an interview next Monday as part of the Media Center’s profile series.  I got a lesson in setting up for an interview from Kevin, the new media specialist.  I recorded what I learned along with some photos and links in the Media Center wiki so others can benefit from my learning.  It will be fun to be able to try it out for real but I am a little nervous.  I tend to be a loner and editing in front of my computer at home is much more appealing.  But I am wondering about doing some video work for my dissertation so this will be an important skill to have.

I haven’t been doing a lot of reading, except for web stuff or FCP manuals, which is unusual for me.  Usually, the first thing I do when I am learning something new is to read a book.  I am planning to read Rosenthal’s section on directing the interview.  In addition, I’ve been watching lots of documentaries and reading about them on the web.  I finally ordered the book Rosenthal recommended and should be getting it in the next day or two.

So, I feel as though I have been steady progress on my learning contract.  I have learned a lot about what I said I wanted to learn.  How have I learned it?  In many different ways: from the web, from other people, from personal reading, and from experimentation.  Could I have learned it differently?  I am always uncomfortable with this question for some reason.  I learned it the way I learned it so the answer is “no.”  I think I’ve got a nice balance of learning methods.  How am I sharing my learning with others?  Via this blog and via the Media Center wiki.  When I told Troy I was adding the stuff about doing an interview to the Wiki, he said, “You’re thinking like an educator.”

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